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Poisʹson dʹAvril

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An April fool. The poisson dʹAvril is the mackerel, and we have the expression “You silly mackerel,” and silly indeed are those who allow themselves to be caught by the palpable jokes engendered on the 1st of April. The Scotch sayhunting the gowk” (cuckoo). It is said that the best explanation is a reference to Matt. xxix. 2.

⁂ The mackerel, says Oudin, is called the poisson dʹAvril, “parce que les macquereaux se prennent et se mangent environ ce mois-la.”


A correspondent of Notes and Queries (June 20, 1891, p. 494) says that the April fish is the aurata, sacred to Venus.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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Point-blank
Point dAppui (French)
Point de Judas (French)
Point-devise
Points
Points of the Escutcheon
Poison
Poison Detectors
Poison of Khaïbar
Poisoners (Secret)
Poisson dAvril
Poke
Poke
Poke
Poke Bonnet
Poker
Poker Pictures
Poker Talk
Pokers
Poky
Polack